Monday, March 21, 2005

News of the Day (March 21)

Secretary of State Rice visits East Asia: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visited Japan, South Korea, and Communist China, in a high-octane trip that was a combination of promising and maddening moments. On the plus side, Rice publicly lauded Japan’s effort to increase its global power: “Japanese leadership in advancing freedom is good for the Pacific community, and good for the world” (Washington Post). She also had harsh words for the Communists’ “anti-secession law” – “not a welcome development” (BBC) – and gave the rhetorical double barrel to the European Union’s effort to lift its arms embargo against Communist China (Cybercast News, Washington Times).

Now for the bad news: she also called on the Communists to fulfill the long-time Washington fantasy of pushing Stalinist North Korea to dismantle its nuclear arsenal (Washington Times), stuck by the idiotic “one China” policy (Agence France Presse/ Yahoo), and attended services at a Communist-run “church” (Cybercast News). The Communist press seemed to like her, which in and of itself should give her pause (BBC).

Rebiya Kadeer is free, but what about these three? While the release of Rebiya Kadeer is good news (fifth item), many other Uighurs from occupied East Turkestan (independent until the Communists brutally conquered it in 1949) are still languishing in jail. The BBC summarizes the plight of three of them Tohti Tunyaz, Abdulghani Memetemin, and Muhammed Tohti Metrozi.

Students at Qinghua University protest BBS crackdown: Cadres afraid of letting students speak their minds shut down Qinghua University BBS. Despite a student protest (Epoch Times), the BBS was “turned into a lifeless, ordinary announcement board”.

Eutelsat gets more criticism: International Federation of Journalists joined the chorus of critics who laid into Eutelsat for its decision to drop the signal of New Tang Dynasty Television in East Asia (fifth item). Report: Epoch Times

Hotel that pulled rooms from Falun Gong practitioners under Justice probe: The Department of Justice “has decided to investigate Homestead Studio Suites for civil rights violations in connection with revoking hotel reservations made by Falun Gong practitioners” (Epoch Times). While this was not necessarily news (sixth item), the attorney for the practitioners, who are suing Homestead, publicly charged cadres from the Communist consulate in Houston: “Then people from the Chinese Consulate went to Homestead. The next thing that happens is my clients get their reservations cancelled” (Epoch Times). So that’s why they let Yao Ming play for the Houston Rockets.

Rally at UN: A number of Chinese dissident groups and supporters, including the China Support Network gathered in from of the United Nations calling for the European Union to keep its arms embargo against Communist China. Yours truly was unable to attend, but I sent ahead a brief statement to be read for me.

400,000 and counting: The number of resignations from the Chinese Communist Party zoomed past 400,000 over the weekend, as The Nine Commentaries on the Chinese Communist Party continued to have its effect. The renouncements continued to come thicker and faster; the Epoch Times reported the resignations of a retired military officer, a commercial manager, two long-time married ex-cadres, a previously ambitious party member, and a friend of persecuted Falun Gong practitioners. Several resignations from abroad also came in, including (Epoch Times for all) a reporter from Germany, several expatriates in New York, over 50 Beijing University alumni, and even a previous long-time pro-Communist activist in Boston. “Rainy Night” wrote the Epoch Times calling for more resignations, while yours truly had a piece there on the resignations’ significance.

The Washington Post proves its managing editor wrong again: A while ago, Washington Post managing editor Phillip Bennett insisted “his paper never characterizes China as a dictatorship” (fifth item). Twice this weekend, his own paper’s editorial page took issue with him: ripping the Bush Administration for sugar-coating Communist China’s “underlying system of repression,” and calling the regime “undemocratic” in sounding the alarm about its ties to Venezuelan caudillo Hugo Chavez.

More Commentary on Communist China: Matthew Little, Epoch Times, rips Western media companies for their eagerness to make deals with the Communists. Chowa Choo, also Epoch Times, aims at the EU plans to lift its embargo against the Communists. Molly Daniels-Ramunujan reviews Ted Fishman’s China Inc. (Epoch Times again). The editors of the Washington Post blast human rights abuse, while Ross Terrill, of Harvard, calls for the President to bring his democracy advocacy to East Asia in the Weekly Standard. Japan’s Yomiuri Shimbun (via Washington Times, last item) comments on the end of the Tung Chee-hwa era in Hong Kong. Michael Coren, Toronto Sun, among other things, rails against Communist China’s hunger to swallow Taiwan.

U.S. will push for UN resolution against Stalinist North Korea on human rights: The U.S. will “co-sponsor resolutions on North Korea” condemning its human rights abuses in the United Nations Human Rights Commission, but as reported last week (second item) Communist China will get a pass from the United States (Newsmax).

Oops! U.S. kept Pakistan’s role in SNK-Libya uranium shipment quiet: Apparently, Stalinist North Korea did not sell uranium directly to Libya, as reported last month (last item). Pakistan was SNK’s buyer – and they sold it to Libya. While the Washington Post, focused on how America’s push for more talks on the SNK’s nuclear arsenal will be damaged, the involvement of Pakistan – a long-time Communist ally and supporter of anti-Indian Kashmir terrorists (see News on Communist China and the Terrorist War) – is far more significant. As for SNK: the problem is not the weapons; it’s the regime.

Rumsfeld calls South Korean troop pullback overdue: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld stood by his plans to reduce the American military presence in South Korea, citing the democratic South’s need to “assume a greater and greater share of the responsibility for providing both the deterrent and the defensive capability on the Korean peninsula” (Voice of America via Epoch Times).

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